Past Events

LIVE Q&A: What's Happening in Israel/Palestine

Join us for a live Q&A and recording of the Telos Check-In with the Telos team. We’ll discuss the escalating violence in Israel/Palestine, answer your questions about what’s happening and what it means for peace in the region, and hear from our friends on the ground.

Movie Club: MAYOR, with David Osit

Join us for a live discussion with David Osit, director of the award-winning documentary MAYOR. The film explores the real-life political saga of Musa Hadid, the Christian mayor of Ramallah, during his second term in office.

Surrounded on all sides by Israeli settlements and soldiers, most people in Ramallah will never have the chance to travel more than a few miles outside their home, which is why Mayor Musa Hadid is determined to make the city a beautiful and dignified place to live. His immediate goals: repave the sidewalks, attract more tourism, and plan the city’s Christmas celebrations. His ultimate mission: to end the occupation of Palestine. Rich with detailed observation and a surprising amount of humor, MAYOR offers a portrait of dignity amidst the madness and absurdity of endless occupation while posing a question: how do you run a city when you don’t have a country?

Palestinian Elections and the Future of Democracy

For the first time in 16 years, Palestinians were preparing to cast their votes for President and the Legislative Council. But within just weeks of the elections, President Mahmoud Abbas postponed the votes, citing Israeli officials failure to guarantee the voting rights of Palestinians in East Jerusalem. Many observers, though, point to the splintering of Abbas’ Fatah party as the reason behind the delay. Join us as we discuss this development, Palestinian politics, and the future of Palestinian democracy. We are honored to be joined by distinguished Palestinian leader, legislator, activist and scholar, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi.

Dr. Hanan Ashrawi is a distinguished Palestinian leader, legislator, activist, and scholar who served as a member of the Leadership Committee and as an official spokesperson of the Palestinian delegation to the Middle East peace process, beginning with the Madrid Peace Conference of 1991. Making history as the first woman to hold a seat in the highest executive body in Palestine, she was elected as member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in 2009 and most recently in 2018. She resigned in 2020. In 1996, Dr. Ashrawi was appointed as the Palestinian Authority Minister of Higher Education and Research. She was elected to the Palestinian Legislative Council representing Jerusalem in 1996, and she was re-elected for the “Third Way” bloc ticket in 2006. As a civil society activist, she founded the Independent Commission for Human Rights (1994), MIFTAH, the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy (1998) and AMAN, the National Coalition for Accountability and Integrity (1999).  She serves on the advisory and international boards of several global, regional and local organizations, and she is the recipient of numerous awards from all over the world, , including the distinguished French decoration, “d’Officier de l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur” (2016), and several academic accolades, including eleven honorary doctorates from universities in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and the Arab world.

Webinar Series: Evangelicals, Israel/Palestine, and Peacemaking

Evangelical Christians have become in recent years one of the most salient groups in U.S. politics, holding strong positions on an array of contentious issues—support for Israel being one among them. But why do evangelicals care so deeply about a nation halfway across the world? What difference does it make for those on the ground? And despite the headlines, can they be a force for peace in Israel/Palestine and beyond? Join us for our mini-series investigating the complex and consequential relationship between Evangelicals, Israel/Palestine, and Peacemaking–April 2021.

Evangelical Peacemaking Movements

As nearly 30% of the U.S. electorate, the evangelical Christian community in the U.S. has the opportunity for massive impact on issues of justice, reconciliation, and peace. But these communities have often neglected the call to be peacemakers, as laid out in Matthew 5:9. Can evangelical communities reclaim this call and be a force for peace?

Join us to hear an esteemed panel of Christian leaders who are working in evangelical communities to do just that. We’ll hear about the movements they lead that are healing conflict and changing the script on injustice, and discuss how local leaders can shepherd their communities into the work of peacemaking. Moderating will be Telos team member David Katibah.

Speakers

Christy Vines: President and CEO, Ideos

Jenny Yang: Senior Vice President of Advocacy and Policy, World Relief

Martin Brooks: President, Peace Catalyst International

Andrew Hanauer: President and CEO, One America Movement

Evangelicals and the Holy Land: Rethinking Relationship to Israel/Palestine

Many American Christians care deeply about modern Israel. Some see events that transpire in the Holy Land as fulfillment of biblical prophecies and view support for Israel as a divine mandate. Others note the way these theologies ignore the humanity and desire for justice and freedom of Palestinians (including Palestinian Christians), while also undermining Jewish concerns for security and legitimacy by making the conflict harder to resolve. These Christians are asking, is there a way to heed Jesus’ call to be peacemakers and honor the need for all the people of the land—Jews, Christians and Muslims—to live with freedom, security and honored dignity?

Join as we hear from Christian leaders who refuse to divide Israelis and Palestinians in their prayers or in their work, and who are reimagining their community’s relationship to the Holy Land to pursue the flourishing of all people. Moderating will be Todd Deatherage, Executive Director and Cofounder of Telos.

Speakers:

Lisa Jernigan: Cofounder and President, Amplify Peace

Rob Dalrymple: Director, DetermineTruth ministries; Board Member, Network of Evangelicals for the Middle East

Modern Christian Zionism

The American evangelical Christian community offers unquestioned and highly energized support for the modern state of Israel—a movement that’s come to be known as Christian Zionism. Today, Christian Zionist organizations donate millions of dollars in aid to Israeli organizations, lobby Congress on behalf of the Israeli government, and benefit from a massive pilgrimage tourism industry. But theologies and practices of Christian Zionism often leave essential questions of peacemaking, the indigenous Palestinian Christian population, and justice unresolved.

Join us as we hear from international experts on the development of the modern Christian Zionism movement, as well as its impact on those living in the land today from Israelis and Palestinians living on the ground. Moderated by Greg Khalil, President and co-founder of Telos.

Speakers

Rev. Dr. Robert O Smith: Director, Briarwood Leadership Center and author of More Desired than Our Owne Salvation: The Roots of Christian Zionism

Rev. Dr. Jack Sara: President, Bethlehem Bible College

Marina Klimchuk: Former team member, Telos

Lent in America

As Christians look forward to Easter at the beginning of next month, join Telos and Coracle for a conversation on Lent, the Principles and Practices of Peacemaking, and a more complete telling of our American story. We’ll be joined by David Bailey, Executive Director of Arrabon, Patty Prasada-Rao, Coordinator of the Repentance Project, and Rev. Erin Clifford, Repentance Project Board Member. Lent, the season in the Christian calendar leading up to Easter, is a time for reflection, fasting, and repentance. We’ll explore how this season provides unique opportunities for peacemaking as we reflect on our nation’s history of racial injustice.

Becoming Reconcilers: Lessons from a Civil War

In partnership with Coracle

Join Coracle and Telos for a conversation with Vesna Tift, a survivor of the Yugoslav wars. We’ll hear from Vesna about her experiences as a refugee on the front-lines of conflict, and about her work ministering to young adults and children also suffering from trauma through programs which promote inter-ethnic dialogue. In an interview moderated by Bill Haley, Executive Director of Coracle, Vesna will share lessons learned on peacemaking, faith, and reconciliation in a circumstance of profound loss and seemingly intractable conflict.

Aswat Acherim (Other Voices) Screening and Discussion

Join us for a live screening of documentary Aswat Acherim (Other Voices) and a live discussion with Director Ose Oyamendan and one of the film’s stars, Roni Keidar. Roni is a cherished Telos partner, who many of you have met on your Telos trips. With moderated discussion by Telos team member, Sarah Sturm, we’ll discuss the situation in Gaza/Sderot, Roni’s story, and the courage of peacemaking in the face of seemingly intractable violence.

Amidst a suffocating siege, rocket attacks, and a deep sense of enmity, conflict across the Gaza-Sderot (Israel) border seems intractable. But some are choosing a different way. They’re fighting across enemy lines for a change that will end the wars, stop the loss of lives and destruction of properties, and overcome the culture of fear. ASWAT ACHERIM follows the lives and stories of the peacemakers fighting for this change in a neighborhood torn apart by conflict.

*NOTE: Join us for a live screening Monday, March 22, 8 PM EDT, and a discussion the following day, Tuesday, March 23 1 PM EDT. If you’re unable to join for the live screening, you can rent the film for a fee here.

Building a Free and Prosperous Palestine

What do a young entrepreneur selling lingerie to a global market, the CEO of a Coca Cola franchise, and a founding partner of Palestine’s only startup investment fund all have in common? Other than being extraordinary business minds, they’re all Palestinians building or promoting business under an extreme, artificial condition: occupation. Unlike business leaders in other parts of the world, they can’t freely move or trade between their own villages and cities, much less with the outside world, nor do they control their own resources, from water to the electromagnetic sphere. But with freedom, they say, prosperity would surely come to an industrious, entrepreneurial people.

Learn how diverse Palestinian business leaders—from heads of international conglomerates to start-up entrepreneurs—navigate this unusual circumstance. And hear directly from these leaders on how they see those from the outside world engaging in support.

Speakers

Ambar Amleh is a Founding Partner at Palestine’s early-stage startup investment fund, Ibtikar, a fund that she championed and helped design, structure, and fundraise. Ibtikar fills a critical funding gap faced by Palestinian entrepreneurs between seed and VC, and is currently the only active VC in Palestine. Ambar is a member of the 23rd class of Kauffman Fellows, and was named as one of the “50 Most Influential Women in the Arab World” by CEO Middle East Magazine and “20 Women VCs of MENA” by MENAbytes.

Christina Ganim is CEO and co-founder of Kenzwoman.com, an e-commerce site selling bras, underwear and shapewear to women in the Gulf markets, helping women battle two main problems: the availability of such products in the region and solving a constant problem women face, which is choosing the right size and right fit for them. Christina was born in Palestine and graduated with a BA in International Studies at DePaul University and completed her MA in International Law at the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies. She previously worked as an assistant producer on the film “Speed Sisters”, a documentary following the lives of a group of Palestinian women race-car drivers.
 
Zahi Khouri, a Palestinian-American born in Jaffa, is the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of The National Beverage Company, the Coca-Cola exclusive licensee for Palestine. He also helped establish the Palestinian Development and Investment Company (PADICO), chairs the NGO Development Center (the largest NGO in Palestine) in association with the World Bank, and was the 2015 recipient of the Oslo Business for Peace Award.
 
Greg Khalil is the Co-founder and President of the Telos Group. Before founding the Telos Group, Greg lived in Ramallah, the West Bank, where he advised the Palestinian leadership on peace negotiations with Israel. He has lectured widely on the Middle East and has been published by The Review of Faith & International Affairs and The New York Times.

PURPLE Screening and Training

Join us for a live screening and training on the short film Purple, a new short documentary from political mediation organization and Telos partner, Resetting The Table, and Emmy award-winning Transient Pictures. Purple presents a rare political conversation that uplifts, provokes, and inspires while going toward the heat of passionate political differences in rural Wisconsin and Iowa—a swing region in two bordering swing states.

 

We’ll screen the short film after which Rabbi Melissa Weintraub — Co-Executive Director of Resetting the Table and one of the creators of Purple — will walk through a suggested post-screening process that participants can bring back to their own communities to spark dialogue and build connection across lines of difference. Come prepared to participate in skill-building and other exercises for productive conversations across political disagreement!

Budrus Movie Screening and Discussion

What can a nonviolent protest movement in the occupied West Bank teach us about peacemaking? And what can coalitions across lines of difference accomplish when they hold a shared commitment to nonviolence and human rights? Join us as we host a live screening and discussion of the documentary film, Budrus and hear from Executive Director of Just Vision, the organization behind the film, Suhad Babaa to answer these questions and more!

Budrus is an award-winning documentary film about Palestinian community organizer, Ayed Morrar, who unites Palestinian political factions and invites Israeli supporters to join an unarmed movement to save his village of Budrus from destruction by Israel’s Separation Wall. Success eludes them until his 15-year-old daughter, Iltezam, launches a women’s contingent that quickly moves to the front lines. Struggling side by side, father and daughter unleash an inspiring, yet little-known, movement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories that is still gaining ground today.

Suhad Babaa is a media strategist, producer, human rights advocate and the Executive Director of Just Vision, an organization that researches, documents and disseminates the stories of Palestinians and Israelis working to end the occupation and build a future of freedom, dignity and equality for all.

Pt. 3: Geopolitics, Diplomacy, and Peacemaking

With a new Presidency and Democrats in charge of both Houses of Congress, the coming months will likely see shifts in US foreign policy. The Biden Administration has already pledged to “reimagine” national security, mend relations with allies, and drive more multinational cooperation around shared threats. Yet given the increasing domestic turmoil at home, and the Democrats’ razor thin margins in Congress, shifts in foreign policy may not be as dramatic as expected. This is particularly true when it comes to Israel/Palestine, where this administration may have disagreed with many of the previous administration’s actions—such as the Jerusalem embassy move—but may do little to reverse them.

Join us for a conversation with Martin S. Indyk, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel and U.S. Special Envoy for Middle East Peace and current distinguished fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, as we’ll dive deeply into some of these policy questions. We’ll listen to deeply understand these larger trends so that we as peacemakers might gain greater clarity on our role. Moderating will be Telos President and Co-founder Greg Khalil.

Martin S. Indyk is distinguished fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Previously, he was the John C. Whitehead Distinguished Fellow in International Diplomacy in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution. From February 2015 to March 2018, he served as executive vice president of Brookings. Indyk served as the U.S. special envoy for the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations from July 2013 to June 2014. Prior to his time as special envoy, he was vice president and director of the Foreign Policy program and a senior fellow and the founding director of the Center for Middle East Policy at Brookings.

Pt 2: Building a Grassroots Network of Peacemakers

One of the key challenges in transforming long-running conflict is the creation of communities of ordinary citizens who understand that their own flourishing is tied to that of their neighbor even when their neighbor is also their adversary. These networks foster a culture of respect and mutuality that both generates pressure for and sustains the necessary systemic changes required to create security, dignity and freedom for all the people of the land, in equal measure.

Join us in conversation with Avi Meyerstein whose vision led to the creation of the Alliance for Middle East Peace (ALLMEP) a coalition of over 125 organizations—and tens of thousands of Palestinians and Israelis—building people-to-people cooperation, coexistence, equality, shared society, mutual understanding, and peace among their communities. We’ll also be joined by ALLMEP U.S. Director Kevin Rachlin and Chief of Staff to Rep. Jeff Fortenberry Andy Braner who will talk about the recent historic passage of the Middle East Partnership for Peace Act, which will direct $250 million toward peacebuilding efforts in Israel/Palestine.

Moderating with be Telos alumna Teresa Casale, advocacy director for Mina’s List, an organization that advances women’s participation in political leadership and peace processes around the world. Teresa has over ten years of experience advocating to the U.S. government, the United Nations, the World Bank, and other global entities. With a specialty in the U.S. Congress, Teresa has helped create, support, and pass multiple pieces of legislation including the Women’s Entrepreneurship and Economic Empowerment Act, the Women, Peace & Security Act, and the Afghan WIN (Women in Negotiations) Act.

Peacemaking from Bottom to Top Part 1: Dialogue to Action

Grassroots movements that create spaces for dialogue and action across lines of difference form an essential building block of sustainable peace. What are the unique advantages and challenges to these efforts, and how do you create ethical frameworks that pursue open opportunities for exchange while also calling participants into action toward mutual flourishing that maximizes dignity, security, and freedom for all?

Join us to hear directly from Hands of Peace, a grassroots organization empowering American, Palestinian, and Israeli youth to become agents of change through immersive, dialogue-based summer programs in the U.S. We’ll hear firsthand how the program has shaped the lives and experiences of two alumni, Stav Arnon and Elias Hawila, and about the larger work of Hands of Peace from executive director Scott Rasmussen. Moderating will be Telos team member David Katibah.

Voices from Bethlehem Part 2: Blessed Are the Peacemakers

In this Part 2, nonviolence expert and practitioner from Bethlehem, Sami Awad, along with musician, author and creator of The Beatitudes Project Stu G from Nashville, Tennessee will join us for a discussion centered on Jesus’ claim, “Blessed are the peacemakers.”

We’ll cover the role of nonviolence in personal and societal transformation and discuss Peacemaking Principle #5: Nonviolence | “Nonviolence is a way of life for courageous people.” —Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., with Telos co-founder and executive director Todd Deatherage moderating.

 

Voices from Bethlehem Part 1: The Other Side of the Wall

Join us in Centering the Leadership of the Marginalized (Practice 4) as we invite Rev. Dr. Munther Isaac, Palestinian theologian, author, and pastor of the Christmas Church in Bethlehem to share about his work in Bethlehem. Also joining us will be Rev. Bill Haley, founder of Coracle and co-founder of The Repentance Project.

We’ll discuss Rev. Isaac’s new book “The Other Side of the Wall,” which challenges theologies from the West that have been weaponized against him and others like him in the Holy Land. Telos co-founder and President Greg Khalil will moderate the conversation.

 

Crossing Lines of Difference

In our age of toxic polarization, we’re quick to make enemies of others and often fail to build meaningful relationships with those different from us, especially those from the “opposite side.” Yet relationships across lines of difference are at the core of peacemaking. Why are these relationships so important, and how can we practically begin to build them and overcome our contempt. Join us as we hear from an esteemed panel of peacemakers whose lives exemplify this difficult work.

On the panel will be Lisa Jernigan, co-founder of Amplify Peace, a global peacemaking movement, as well as Robi Damelin and Layla Alsheikh, Israeli and Palestinian mothers who have formed an unlikely friendship through their work building a reconciliation process in Israel/Palestine with the Parents Circle – Families Forum, an joint Israeli and Palestinian organization of bereaved families. Moderating the discussion will be Telos Co-founder and Executive Director, Todd Deatherage.

Restoring Democracy: A Peacemaker's Guide to Civic Virtue

Democratic norms and common civic virtue feel more strained than ever before, but we know the damage of this season need not be permanent. Peacemakers recognize the opportunity and agency they have to write a new story in their community and across our nation. In our post-election world, what will it take for peacemakers to restore democracy and establish a shared life under common values, a life where we all have a seat at the table.

Join us as we ask these questions and hear from peacemakers Melissa Weintraub, Jim Mullins, and Greg Khalil. Melissa will share about her work building dialogue and deliberation across political divides as the co-founding Executive Director of Resetting the Table, and Jim Mullins will share about his experiences building civic virtue in his community and through the peacemaking community he co-founded, Peace Catalyst International. Telos co-founder and President Greg Khalil will moderate the discussion.

Navigating Division: Why We're Divided and What We Can Do About It

It’s no secret that our nation is divided. Each of us has felt it in our communities, places of worship, and even families. We’re quick to define ourselves by the group we’re in and refuse to listen to those outside. But when we do so, we lose the opportunity to collaborate for the common good and secure a shared future for all.
 
What’s behind our tendency to divide, and what can we do about it? Join us as we hear from Andrew Hanauer, President and CEO of the One America Movement. Andrew will walk us through the neuroscience of division, and offer practical steps on how to have tough conversations that lead us to joint action.

The Principles and Practices of Peacemaking

We know that our nation is at a crossroads. Discord, injustice, and mistrust have taken center stage. But we believe there’s an alternative way, one that secures a future for all and unites us with common purpose. How do we walk it?
 
Join us for an interactive webinar on the Principles and Practices of Peacemaking, our guide to engaging in this divided age and beyond.
 We’ll walk through the core principles of peacemaking—what it means, what it requires, and where it takes us—and follow with a training on the practices that get us there, that immerse in conflict for the sake of healing.

What's at Stake: Israel/Palestine and the US Election

With the US presidential election just a few weeks away, we talked to the nation’s experts on the historic influence of US policy on Israel/Palestine, the Trump Administration’s record on the region, and what the election could mean for our partners on the ground and prospects for peace in Israel/Palestine. Speakers included president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace Lara Friedman, Senior fellow at the Middle East Institute Khaled Elgindy, and Telos co-founder and executive director Todd Deatherage
 
Speakers:
Lara Friedman is the president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace and a former U.S. Foreign Service Officer. With more than 25 years working in the Middle East foreign policy arena, Friedman is a leading authority on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, with particular expertise on the Israeli-Arab conflict, Israeli settlements, Jerusalem, and the role of the U.S. Congress. She is published widely in the U.S. and international press and is regularly consulted by members of Congress and their staffs, by Washington-based diplomats, by policy-makers in capitals around the world, and by journalists in the U.S. and abroad.
 
Khaled Elgindy is a Senior Fellow at the Middle East Institute and the author of Blind Spot: America and the Palestinians, from Balfour to Trump. Elgindy previously served as a fellow in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution from 2010 through 2018. Prior to arriving at Brookings, he served as an adviser to the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah on permanent status negotiations with Israel from 2004 to 2009, and was a key participant in the Annapolis negotiations of 2007-08. Elgindy is also an adjunct instructor in Arab Studies at Georgetown University.
 
Todd Deatherage spent sixteen years in senior positions in the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government before co-founding the Telos Group. He is a native Arkansan and a graduate of the University of Arkansas. He began his career as an educator. He and his family live in Fairfax County, Virginia.